Our Community

Bhokar is a not only a drought-prone area but also a district that has a low rate of literacy, especially among women. The dropout rate among girls of school age is also very high. As this is a rural area, caste practices are very prevalent in a community that is highly patriarchal. The dynamics of globalization are forcing urban villagers to migrate back to their homelands, and this migrant population has become the carrier of HIV AIDS to the villages.

The decrease in rainfall has led to the failure of agriculture and to a rise in unemployment.  Consequently, alcoholism, gambling, and armed robberies are increasing day by day. Women are the first victims of these hazards, especially at night since there often is a shortage of electricity.

Since 2005, 5500 women are connected to Ashankur, through our work in 22 villages around Bhokar

Why Women?

There is tremendous innate power within a woman. She has the power that brings "the world into being" and nurtures it. Through her will, service and commitment she generates power from morning till evening in her family, community and the society. She plays a crucial role in fostering sustainable development.

However, the oppressive social political economic and religious processes in the traditional Indian society has consistently pushed down woman to such a level that the progressive loss of power has affected the personal consciousness of a woman who used to be identified as a goddess of power and wealth and the power house of energy. Women do not own their own power, resources and energies. It is often controlled, managed and dominated by forces outside her, men in her family, community and society at large. She is made dependent on others; her power is taken away from her. This loss of power, causes not only material impoverishment but also lead to her marginalization in the society.

In spite of marginalization of women in every domain of our society there is hope and that hope emerges from women.  We strongly believe that unless and until the power equations in our families, communities and society do not change, women's conditions will not see much realistic change. Women will have to take the charge, control and management of their own powerhouse. We believe that the women's power within needs to be awakened in order to empower them.

Many rural Indian women are now the families' bread winners. The source of income for these women is closely tied to agricultural activities. These women, however, have very little education, and therefore do not have control over the resources. Limited exposure to other experiences gives them little or no expertise in making decisions outside the affairs of the home.

The process of empowering women through traditional practices is long and slow. We believe that if women are organized, made aware, and equipped with right skills they can use the power and potential that is in them to overcome obstacles and build society.


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Contact Information

Ashankur Rural Women's Center
Village Bhokar
Tal. Shrirampur
Dist. Ahmednagar
Maharashtra India 413 739

Phone: 02422 - 245649